Several experts and keen observers have accurately assessed that the West has provided Ukraine with enough aid not to lose Russia’s unprovoked all-out war against Ukraine, but not enough to win it.
If the West wishes to stop the bleeding – both literally and figuratively – it should now provide Ukraine with all the aid it needs to win this war with its far-reaching consequences in the immediate future.
This is clearly the only right and sensible thing to do since Ukraine continues to pay the ultimate price by sacrificing civil and military lives to regain its territorial integrity and shield Europe from the Kremlin’s imperialist plans. If Ukraine does not stop Russia now and win the war, then Russia will eventually directly challenge a NATO member country, provoking another world war and forcing Western countries to send their own young men and women to battle.
A reality check is in order for those who do not see the full scope and proximity of this very real menace and, consequently, openly or surreptitiously advocate for the West to stop supplying military aid to Ukraine, often repeating the mistaken argument that Ukraine should not be given a “blank cheque”.
First and foremost, human lives are priceless and if the West can neutralize the Russian imperialist threat in the very near future without sacrificing its own human lives, leaving only Ukraine with this hellish burden, then it is obvious that the West should prioritize such course of action, at this time.
Moreover, although the U.S. and the EU have committed considerable amounts to support Ukraine, neither of them, nor anyone else, has given Ukraine any “blank cheque” during Russia’s war against it.
Indeed, on 24 September 2023, Bloomberg оpinion columnist Niall Ferguson put the aid provided by the U.S. and the EU to Ukraine during Russia’s genocidal war into perspective with the following eye-opening facts:
“The US has made bilateral commitments to Ukraine totaling $76.8 billion. Like anything involving the word “billion” that sounds like a lot of money. But it amounts to just 0.33% of U.S. GDP. If one considers only military aid to Ukraine, the U.S. spent 15 times as much as a share of GDP on the Korean War, five times as much on the Vietnam War, five times as much on the Gulf War, and four times as much on the Iraq War.
Another way of putting this war into perspective is to compare the amount the EU is spending in support for Ukraine with its spending on other recent disasters. It spent 10 times as much on the EU pandemic recovery fund (the clumsily named NextGenerationEU) and five times as much on the Eurozone bailouts between 2010 and 2012. Since the war began, Germany, Italy and the UK have all spent seven times as much on energy subsidies for their own citizens as on aid for Ukraine.”
Finally, it is clear that the longer Russia’s war continues, the greater the invaluable human losses will be for Ukraine and the higher the total price tag of this war will be for the West.
That is why, Western leaders should not only face this stark reality head-on by providing Ukraine with all necessary military and economic aid now, but also plainly explain it to their constituents and act accordingly to ensure Ukraine’s quick victory and our collective peace, security and – ultimately – prosperity.
Reprinted with permission from the Toronto Star where this article appeared under a different title: “To stop the bleeding in Ukraine, West must give more aid immediately.”
Eugene Czolij, a lawyer, is President of the NGO “Ukraine-2050”, Honorary Consul of Ukraine in Montreal, and former Ukrainian World Congress President (2008-2018)
The views expressed in this opinion article are the author’s and not necessarily those of Kyiv Post.
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